Young man sentenced to one year and one month in prison for cyberbullying against UPR students

The federal judge Silvia Carreño Coll sentenced a former student from the Cayey Campus of the University of Puerto Rico (UPR) to 13 months (one year and one month) in prison for cyberbullying charges.

Iván Santell Velázquez had pleaded guilty last July of launching a campaign of cyberattacks directed at multiple email accounts of the institution and of at least 15 women.

The investigation carried out by the Office of San Juan del Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) maintains that Santell Velázquez, while studying at the Cayey Campus of the UPR, sent unauthorized emails to professors, administrative staff and students under the nickname “Slay3r_r00t”.

Specifically, Santell Velázquez undertook his campaign against more than 100 students and gained access to the university email accounts of multiple people.

Santell Velázquez collected personal information from its victims through phishing y spoofing and, between 2019 and 2021, he gained access to the Snapchat accounts of several women. Some of the accounts contained intimate photos of the victims that she later shared with third parties, who posted the images online.

One victim indicated that after Santell Velázquez gained access to her Snapchat account, she began receiving harassing messages along with copies of her intimate photos. Photos taken from her Snapchat account were republished, without her consent, on both Twitter and Facebook.

“The prosecution of cybercriminals is a priority of the United States Department of Justice. Cyber ​​crimes not only cause financial damage to corporate victims, but also cause emotional and psychological damage to vulnerable victims, in many cases children and the elderly. This conduct will not be tolerated”, highlighted the head of the Federal Prosecutor’s Office in Puerto Rico, William Stephen Muldrow.

“This case also demonstrates the importance of safeguarding personal information and passwords, as well as the care we must exercise when responding to suspicious emails and text messages,” he added.

For his part, the special agent in charge of the FBI office in San Juan, Joseph Gonzalez, added that “cyberbullying can have a significant impact on victims, ranging from suicidal tendencies to fear, anger, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). This is why, at the FBI, we are committed to investigating these heinous crimes, and we encourage the public to report any incidents to law enforcement agencies.”

Victims and witnesses can report cyber crimes through the portal or by calling 787-987-6500.

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